Two of them in the Gulf of Oman.
Two oil tankers were hit in suspected attacks in the Gulf of Oman, shipping firms and industry sources said on Thursday, sending oil prices as much as 4% higher a month after four other tankers were damaged by limpet mines in the region.
One of the tankers, the Front Altair, carrying a cargo of petrochemical feedstock, was ablaze in waters between Gulf Arab states and Iran.
Iran’s state news agency said it had sunk, although the Norwegian owner had said it was afloat and its crew were safe. The other tanker was adrift without any crew.
The Bahrain-based U.S. Navy Fifth Fleet said it was assisting the tankers after receiving distress calls. The United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations, part of Britain’s Royal Navy, said it was investigating with its partners.
Full details about Thursday’s incident were not immediately clear. The firm which chartered one of the vessels said it suspected a torpedo had hit the ship, while a source said the other might have been damaged by a magnetic mine.
An investigation blamed limpet mines for last month’s attacks on four tankers. Saudi Arabia and the United States blamed Iran for those attacks, a charge Tehran denies.
Oil prices surged as much as 4% after Thursday’s news. The region was already on edge following attacks in May on Gulf oil assets that occurred amid a dispute between Iran and the United States over Tehran’s nuclear programme.
Torpedo … oil prices surge … nuclear [nu-ku-ler] program[me].
At least it wasn’t the Abe Lincoln. Someone keep John Bolton away from the football.